Day 46, taxes and books and a painting

After yesterday’s writing, I packed up two boxes of books to take to FOPAL on Wednesday. This consisted mostly of bird books and birding-related books. I had no idea we had so many books about birds and birding. Marian had accumulated them over the years; I recognized only a couple. I’ve no intention of ever spotting another bird; that was her hobby that I supported but didn’t really enjoy. So losing those books is another shard of the prior life, but not one that caused much emotion. Well, a little — when I riffled the page of her most-used birding guide and saw all the check marks and notes in her handwriting of what species we’d seen and where.

Another half-box was the books by and about Arthur Ransome that I mentioned back on Day 35. I received the two additional, $1 books that I ordered then. Now I arrayed them all on the table and sat down with eBay to see what prices such books were getting. And quickly realized that my collection was still incomplete, there was one more novel and at least two more popular biographies that I didn’t have. So much for selling a complete bookshelf. I put the books in the box for FOPAL.

Except for one. Most of the books are paperback, but one is cloth-bound, and on looking inside I realized it was a first edition, or at least a first American printing, dated 1942. Similar Ransome hardbacks are on eBay for $50 and up, so I took some pictures and put it up on eBay. We’ll see.

Got an email from Craig wondering if I wanted to visit Channing house or not. Very timely, given how I’d just put my ILF decision back on track, so in a quick exchange we agreed to meet Saturday afternoon.

The rest of the afternoon, I added yet another feature to my program, and to my delight, the new feature worked exactly right first try. So that wrapped day 45 nicely.

Wednesday, 1/16/2019

Went for a run, it was OK. Back  home did some desk stuff. Paid a credit card bill. Created the folder to hold all the tax info for 2018, using the 2017 folder as a model. Key item here is to download the PDF copies of a total of eight form 1099-Rs, from all the various accounts we have that generate those (two Social Security, two pension, four brokerage). Made a checklist of all the tasks to do going forward with the taxes. That doesn’t really get busy until February.

Booked myself to attend the PAC-12 Women’s Basketball Tournament, in Las Vegas March 7-10. Bought one reserved seat, booked a hotel room, booked the flights. This will be the first time I’ve traveled anywhere as a bachelor, and indeed the first flight since… I think since October 2017 when we returned from NYC. Hopefully the gummint shutdown will be over by March?

In the mail: the official document from the Neptune Society, stating that Marian was “respectfully delivered to the sea” on January 10th. I have to say, the Neptune Society has been a class act the whole way, supportive, responsive, professional. I’m glad we signed with them all those years ago.

One of the items I want to get rid of is this painting:4337722_orig

We commissioned this; it was actually painted for us; we met with Dean Linsky (click the link to see his website) in Yosemite Valley in 2004 and walked around with him pointing out features we liked. A couple of months later the painting arrived, and it has been on our wall ever since.

Looking forward I don’t want to try to house it in a small apartment. Linsky’s work is marketed mostly through New Masters Gallery in Carmel. I’d like to consign it there for sale, but I’ve been having a hard time getting any info out of them by email. So today I called up and spoke directly to the gallery owner, Bill Hill. I have to say, Bill’s telephone manners are abrupt. Although his gallery has been in business for years, he’s clearly not a salesman type. I emphasized how I would have to depend on his expertise to know what the painting would go for, and at his request sent a cell-phone shot of it again by email. Maybe this time he’ll look at it.

Anyway, off to FOPAL, taking two boxes of books. And home for a quiet evening.


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